Civilization’s last bastion on the drive west towards the Sino-Pakistani border is the unassuming town of Tashkurgan. It’s perhaps surprising to find one of China’s most beautiful cities here, but maybe not. The all consuming machine of consumerism and China’s drive has yet to reach this far west. It can’t last forever.
Once the seat of a fledgling Tajikistan empire – it’s name literally means ‘stone fort’, and the eponymous fort still looms large over the entire town. But more on that later.